Devil May Cry 4, widely considered one of the best hack and slash games ever created, originally released 10 years ago with an enhanced version releasing on PC during 2015.

The minimum requirements for this "Special Edition" are quite conservative:

  • Processor: Intel(R) Core(TM) 2 Duo 2.4GHz, AMD Athlon(TM) X2 2.8 GHz

  • Graphics: NVIDIA(R) GeForce(R) 8800 GTS, AMD Radeon(TM) HD 3850 with 512MB RAM or better.

  • RAM: 2 GB

Since the game includes a rather extensive benchmark I was interested in seeing if I could incorporate it into the set of test I always run on very low-end PCs with Integrated GPUs. There are also a couple of interesting tweaks you can do to greatly increase your performance when needed.

For example, the first PC I tested was the GPD Pocket. This miniature MacBook-like laptop is powered by an Intel Atom x7 Z8750 + 8 GB of RAM.

On the lowest settings and a resolution of 800x600, the initial benchmark scene shows around 25 to 20 and the second an average of more or less 22.

Time to make it better.

We are going to need a tool called HxD that allows you to modify the game's insides. You can download it here.

After installing and opening the tool navigate to the install directory of the game and find its main executable. Since it is easy to accidentally damage the .exe during this process I highly recommend you create a backup before trying the next steps.

Drag and drop the .exe into HxD to open its content and search for mbGSDOF. Overwrite the first "m" with an "x". It should now read xbGSDOF.

Then search for uDOFFilter. Overwrite the first "u" with an "x". It should now read xDOFFilter.

These two changes will disable Depth Of Field.

Now search for uMotionBlurFilter and change the first "u" with an "x". It should now read xMotionBlurFilter. This disables Motion Blur.

Just these two changes increase performance on the first scene to 30 and the second scene to between 22 to 27. Never underestimate how much resources can post-processing require!

Given the encouraging results, I was interested in seeing if the game could be (somewhat) played on the GPD Win.

Not be confused with the GPD Win 2 currently on Indiegogo, the first GPD Win was the first Windows handheld made by Chinese company GPD, who also created the GPD Pocket laptop.

The original GPD Win was powered by an Intel Atom x7 Z8750 + 4GB of ram. With the previous tweaks and a resolution of 800x600 stretched the game seems surprisingly playable during a short test as long as framerate is set to "variable". Other settings caused the game to run in slow motion, even if the framerate was sufficient.

So, if you have a really low-end PC and want to give this game a try consider these tweaks.